Do red cars have higher insurance rates?

Although the common myth is that red car owners pay more for insurance, color does not affect coverage prices. We'll cover the actual factors that will determine what you pay for car insurance.

UPDATED: Jul 11, 2022Fact Checked

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Sara Routhier, Managing Editor and Outreach Director, has professional experience as an educator, SEO specialist, and content marketer. She has over five years of experience in the insurance industry. As a researcher, data nerd, writer, and editor she strives to curate educational, enlightening articles that provide you with the must-know facts and best-kept secrets within the overwhelming world o...

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Written by Sara Routhier
Director of Outreach Sara Routhier

Cynthia Lanctot is an insurance professional with ten years of industry experience. Cynthia is licensed in several states, and holds an associate in claims law, as well as a bachelor’s degree in English. Cynthia’s experience includes the New England and Northeast states. She currently works as a liability claims professional and an occasional online contributor.

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Reviewed by Cynthia Lanctot
Licensed Agent Cynthia Lanctot

UPDATED: Jul 11, 2022

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A Concise Overview

  • Despite the common myth that red car owners pay higher insurance rates, the color of your vehicle doesn’t affect your insurance rates
  • Other common myths about red cars include increased tickets and car thefts, which are also inaccurate
  • Factors that affect your insurance include your age, location, and the model and age of your car

There are a lot of factors to consider when shopping for a new car. Some people want the sportiest drive they can get, while others prioritize safety. Large trucks are ideal for some drivers, while others like compact coupes.

One factor most shoppers have a preference for is the color of the vehicle. Picking the perfect color allows you to showcase a hint of your personality.

Red is the fifth most popular color in America for vehicles, usually chosen because of the bold impression it makes. However, people sometimes hesitate to buy one because of concerns that insurance on red cars is higher.

The good news is that red cars don’t have higher insurance prices. There are several factors that insurance companies look at to determine how much you’ll pay for insurance including your age, but the color of your car is not one of them.

Read on to explore red cars and what car insurance companies look at to determine your rates. Then, compare prices with as many companies as possible to find the best policy for your red car.

Red Cars and Insurance Rates

There are a lot of myths about red cars, but you’ll be happy to know that most are inaccurate. For example, one of the most common myths about red cars is insurance is higher than for other colors.

You might be asking yourself, “Is insurance higher on red cars?” This myth is false. Insurance companies pay no attention to the color of your car when they set your rates. There are other characteristics the company will look at — such as make, model, and age — but the color is not one of them.

Another common myth is that red cars get the most tickets. The idea is that police officers are more likely to notice a red car disobeying traffic laws. However, this myth is also false. White cars receive the most tickets in the U.S.

Some people think red cars are more attractive to thieves since they stand out more, but the opposite is true. Since they stand out more, carjackers are less likely to take them. As for break-ins, green cars are statistically more likely to be the target of thieves.

So, the next time someone warns you that car insurance for red cars is higher or they get more tickets, you’ll be ready to set them straight.

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What factors do insurance companies look at to determine rates?

Every insurance company will have a unique formula for determining rates. All companies are different, but most usually include the following factors:

  • Location. Insurance companies carefully track claims numbers and assign rates to individual ZIP codes. Your rates can change by moving even a single ZIP code.
  • Car model. Some car models are more likely to be involved in accidents, while others cost more to repair.
  • Age. Young, inexperienced drivers are more likely to engage in reckless behavior and cause accidents. Older drivers also see higher rates on the other side of the spectrum.
  • Gender. Claims show that men are more likely to be involved in traffic incidents, engage in reckless or aggressive behavior, and drive under the influence (DUI) than women.
  • Driving history. Drivers with at-fault accidents, DUIs, or other traffic incidents in their records will pay more for their coverage and might have to get high-risk insurance.
  • Marital status. Experts aren’t sure why, but married people are less likely to file claims than their single counterparts.
  • Credit score. Insurance companies charge more for lower credit scores in states where it’s legal to factor them in.
  • Yearly mileage. The more you drive, the more likely you will be in an accident. You might find cheaper rates with a usage-based program if you don’t use your car often.

While these are the most common factors an insurance company will look at, there may be others. In addition, insurance companies treat factors differently, so rates for a teen driver might be much higher with one provider than at another. This is why it’s so important to compare rates.

What types of insurance can you buy?

While the above factors help determine your rates, the amount of insurance you need will also play a huge role.

The amount of insurance you need depends on your budget, the car you drive, and how much protection you want. The state minimum requirement might be right if you have an older, less valuable vehicle and want to save money on your insurance.

However, if your car is newer or you don’t own it outright, you might need full coverage. Learn more about the types of coverage you can buy below:

  • Liability. Liability helps pay for damage you cause to people and property. Most states require liability coverage before you can legally drive.
  • Collision. Liability doesn’t cover damage to your car. You’ll need a collision policy. Collision auto insurance coverage would cover you even if you caused the accident.
  • Comprehensive. If you want your car protected from damage outside of accidents, a comprehensive policy covers weather, theft, vandalism, animal contact, and fire.
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist. Although most states require insurance, not all drivers follow the law. Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage protects you against drivers with little to no insurance.
  • Personal injury protection. Medical expenses rack up quickly after an accident. Personal injury protection (PIP) helps pay for hospital bills, physical therapy, and lost wages.

These are standard insurance options that you can find at most companies, and most sell add-ons to increase the value of your policy.

How much does insurance cost?

While the actual price you’ll pay depends on your situation and how much coverage you want, you can get an idea of how much you might pay by looking at the average price in your state.

Monthly Insurance Rates by State
StateAverage Monthly State Minimum RatesAverage Monthly Full Coverage Rates
District of Columbia$61$122
New Hampshire$35$72
New Jersey$77$121
New Mexico$46$87
New York$73$124
North Carolina$31$69
North Dakota$25$68
Rhode Island$71$121
South Carolina$53$94
South Dakota$27$72
West Virginia$43$89
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As you can see, the minimum requirement for insurance is much cheaper than full coverage. No matter what insurance you buy, you can rest assured that red cars having higher insurance prices is just a myth. So if you have your sights set on a red vehicle, you don’t have to worry about it affecting the cost of your policy. 

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Find the Best Car Insurance for Red Cars

Adding extra insurance might have made people who own red cars nervous. However, there’s no reason to skip more coverage on a red car because the color of your vehicle doesn’t change the price. However, you also need to know that red cars don’t require more insurance than other colored vehicles either. So you should get the type of policy that suits your budget rather than being concerned about having more or less coverage because of the paint job.

Now that you know insurance is not higher on red cars, you should be ready to find the best coverage you want for your vehicle. Make sure to look at as many companies as possible to find the best price and plan for your red car.

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